Toska - Polyforms (2014)
On their debut release, this three-piece band from Northern Ireland bring in a guest, Aran Glover, to provide the vocals for their post-metal experimentation, which they've condensed into a ~10-minute track. Mr. Glover's vocals bring plenty of aggression to the mix, surging over the rhythmic interplay of guitar and bass while the drums provide a precise counter-point. Quick bursts and fades add even more unpredictability to the musical proceedings, as does the group's ability to suddenly transition into more directly melodic passages, while keeping an under-current of energy flowing along. There's some very nice attention to tonality and harmonics, with a clean mix doing right by the work this crew has put into the music. As a debut, it's pretty sharp, though it does raise the question of how they'll handle vocals on subsequent releases; personally, I wouldn't be averse to an EP or two just to hear the trio tackle some purely instrumental material. They've got the chops, let's just see where they go with it!
For Fans Of; Tool, Spiral Architect, ZAVM, V Shape Mind, Queens Of The Stone Age